Lake Hartwell Fishing Report - March 10th, 2021

Lake Hartwell continues to fish pretty well overall with the spotted bass and crappie making up for the days the stripers and hybrids act a little finicky. The lake level is 659.02 ft as of Wednesday, March 10th with water temps around the 55-degree mark. A decent warming trend is here with favorable weather forecasted for the weekend. I’d say it’s a great weekend to get out on the lake and start looking for some fish.


March is a major transitional period and can be a difficult time of the year to stay on bodies of fish day in and day out. Often times during March, the fish move constantly and it can be difficult to find the same fish two days in a row. There are still fish clinging to the wintertime patterns and fish setting up for the spring patterns. Be ready to adjust your tactics and keep in mind what area of the lake your fishing and what patterns to look out for. The lake divides into three distinct sections for the month of March with the southern end tailoring more towards the wintertime patterns and the northern end being more of a shallow spring pattern. While the mid-lake area tends to be a mix of both. This is one time of year that the lake tends to fish better in the afternoons than the mornings, so keep that in mind when planning your trips.


The south end has fished relatively deep, with fish falling off high spots pretty quickly each morning. Start shallow first thing in the morning on main lake points and shoals from 10-25ft of water with free lines and planner boards. Once the fish pull off the high spots look on the same points and shoals in 35-50ft. Make the switch to down lines and freelines and be ready to move often if the fish don’t jump on you pretty quick. It can be a numbers game this time of year so the more areas you fish the higher your chances of running into a body of fish.


The upper end of the lake has seen most of the fish embracing spring patterns and pulling up shallow for the better part of the day. Focus on major creeks in each of the river arms and mostly mid creek to the far back sections. The fish can get really shallow making graphing them difficult this time of year. I usually focus on areas that are holding a high concentration of bait and target likely fish-holding areas like points and high spots. Planner boards and freelines have been the biggest producers with herring and medium-sized gizzard shad being equally productive. Casting Mini Mack’s and swimbaits over high spots and points has also produced bonus fish on most trips this week.


Good luck and great fishing!


Capt. Nathan Key

Shad Slinger Fishing Charters


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